NVIDIA Showcases Ion's Capabilities In GPU-Intensive IE9 Tests

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News Posted: Thu, Apr 1 2010 8:32 AM
If you've managed to glance through any of our recent netbook reviews, you'd know that we're big fans of NVIDIA's Ion. This technology has enabled netbooks to handle multi-media in a way they never could using older integrated GPUs, and we honestly wish there were more options out there just like it. One area that often gets overlooked is just how important a GPU is when browsing the Web, particularly when viewing graphically intense sites like Bing Maps or YouTube HD. Believe it or not, the GPU is becoming a more and more important part of browsing as the Web advances, and that trend isn't slowing down soon.

NVIDIA managed to get an early build of Internet Explorer 9 onto a pair of netbooks, one with Ion and one without. They then ran a series of tests on them to show how much difference the Ion chipset made, and it's all shown in the video just below. They're all pretty stunning. A map zooming test showed the non-Ion machine lagging way behind, while the 3D rendering test showed the Ion machine hitting around 44FPS and the non-Ion machine hitting around 3FPS. A big difference, obviously. The Ion machine in question is actually the Asus Eee PC 1201PN, due out this month in America, and if this video is any indication, it'll be quite the little powerhouse when it starts shipping.

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Inspector replied on Thu, Apr 1 2010 12:30 PM

wow, that really speeds up the browser! The part with all the logos spinning... it hurt my eyes! xD the ion one was spinning fast and the other one was like not even moving... lol the guy raging Stick out tongue

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GPU's are becoming more and more important no question. This is why I think eventually Intel will buy Nvidia as their graphics play a major role in viewing HD content or just viewing rich graphics. The GPU really enhances the experience and for a netbook and desktops in general and I see this trend continuing in the future.This will propel Intel to the next level of visual entertainment which is what the average Joe and Jane are looking for from their PC.

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Maybe if Nvidia can make max render that fast, I might think about one of their GPU's :P

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RyuGTX replied on Thu, Apr 1 2010 3:41 PM

Hopefully the price difference between an ION platform and an integrated Intel graphics isn't that big.


I don't know about Intel buying Nvidia just yet. Intel just got graphics integrated with their cpu which should increase performance. And this should be sufficient for the average Joe and Jane for now.

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sp12 replied on Thu, Apr 1 2010 4:20 PM

I certainly hope Intel doesn't buy Nvidia, it would only hurt consumers.

Intel currently has both crossfire and sli support.

Though tech-wise, Intel's advanced fabs and x86 expertise could help Nvidia's GPGPU tech, as well as system integration.

Though I wouldn't actually be surprised if it happened.

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So the future is GPU integration with Internet browsers. Interesting. I like where this is going honestly, and it's really surprising that Internet Explorer 9 will be bringing this to the table first, especially coupled with Nvidia Ion. 

GPU recognition sounds like an excellent idea. Will this possibly eliminate the need for Flash by any chance, or utterly improve it? 

I was impressed with the Google Earth demonstration. I like how the Ion can cycle through the zooming process with literally seamless clarity. It definitely makes our current technology look low grade. I also liked how they zoomed into a vegas hotel....I think. 

I was planning on getting a netbook specifically for college, but I was always turned away from them because they feel so worthless that  smartphones would be more applicable to my needs. But this has rekindled everything. 

Thanks for filling me in HH. 

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Ah it would have been cool if I had Ion in my netbook but I wanted a netbook that would last without having to charge for a long time... but I'm also a gamer... so ahhh Dx

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AKwyn replied on Sat, Apr 3 2010 3:06 PM

It's surprising. I didn't think that GPU's would be the future but here it is, making text look better and accelerating future web applications.

And while IE9 may be the first, The alpha version of Firefox 3.7 has this implemented currently and I'm using it right now.


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